The world is in a hurry, but change is slow. Agendas are fully booked, labour markets are tense, and we seem already (too) late to alter the course of climate change. We have faced a crisis situation which has led us towards working on more ‘pandemic preparedness’.
In many countries, evaluation programs try to draw lessons from the pandemic and its impact, yet at the same time try to speed up research activities, the provision of expert advice, and policy making in an attempt to reduce health damage and stabilise tensions in societies through rapid decision-making. However, these decisions themselves are eventually followed up by deep discussions about what the ‘right’ directions should be. These directions are deeply debated given how people’s perspectives for ‘what is right’ differ significantly.
In this editorial published in the International Journal of Integrated Care (IJIC), Vilans CEO Mirella Minkman talks about a significant challenge that has been uncovered in dealing with the pandemic, which is that solutions are not simply health-based, but must be addressed from a wider spectrum of responses to deal with the so-called ‘wicked problem’ i.e. problems that are subject to real-world constraints that prevent multiple and risk-free attempts at solving – such as those in public health.